Monday, February 23, 2009

A Salute to Dan Vlamis' College Girlfriend

My interview with Dan Vlamis, of the BIWA SIG, is missing some key points. Neither the video nor the Oracle Magazine column talk about his degree in technology from Brown or the fact that he took the job that launched his Oracle-based BI career just to be near his girlfriend. But these my friends are facts. The Oracle business intelligence and data warehousing world can thank that girlfriend (soon to become his wife) for luring Vlamis to Information Resources, Inc. where he worked on the pcExpress calculation engine that is even today part of Oracle OLAP.

Up Close Interview: Dan Vlamis, BIWA Summit from Oracle Magazine on Vimeo.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Coming to a Playful Decision

While watching this eight-minute talk by John Cacioppo on economics and social behavior I couldn’t help think of the Oracle user groups I’ve come to know in the past year.

“Bringing experts together isn’t sufficient,” say Cacioppo. Real progress is made “when you foster a deeper connection” between people with different experiences.

Here, for me, is the heart of his talk:
After you spend quality time with people at an event -- walking together, eating together -- you stop saying, “this is what I know,” and you start to actually know and like people and want to understand more about their perspective. Now you can start taking advantage of the knowledge that is unique to each person, not just the common knowledge of the group. That’s when growth happens. Curiosity wins out. You come to much better, deeper, more playful decisions.”